Smart Cities

We have smart phones, meters, watches, and the “internet of things” that promises to embed “smartness” into most household and business objects and connect them. The same concept applied to city infrastructure, is now being called “smart cities”.

City infrastructure includes: water supply, electricity, waste management, transportation, communication, emergency services, law enforcement, education, healthcare, zoning, and more. Whether these functions are directly controlled by government or by private industry, they need to interact at times and the degree of connectivity can have an impact on how smoothly the city functions.

Distributed functions that are networked and able to dynamically self regulate can create an autonomous city. Enhanced performance and quality, and reduced costs are the desired outcomes. Here are some more expectations:

  • A traffic flow control system that can clear routes for emergency vehicles and route traffic to reduce congestion during peak hours
  • On demand lighting to reduce energy requirements
  • On demand public transportation – some of it autonomous
  • Water and electricity production and storage matched to need and monitoring to detect and repair problems quickly
  • Autonomous cleaning and sanitation machines keep the city cleaner more efficiently
  • Faster response from emergency services and law enforcement, with better performance
  • Online education resources provide higher quality teaching and increased availability
  • High availability of healthcare consultations via advanced communication networks – more distributed healthcare services
  • Zoning restrictions can become more variable with lower environmental impact

The smart city will be cleaner, more efficient, with higher availability of services and a more desirable place to live.

SEE ALSO:
A Fully Automated Home
Live Better in Space
Distributed Utilities

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